Above and Under: Introducing the Challenges of Education for Sustainable Development. A Case Study from Malta

University essay from Lunds universitet/Institutionen för kulturgeografi och ekonomisk geografi; Lunds universitet/Humanekologi

Abstract: By the end of the 1960s there was a growing environmental concern all around the globe. As a part of an answer to this challenge the need was recognized for a reorientation of the education processes towards developing knowledge, attitudes and skills for resolving the issues. This was the birth of the concept of Environmental Education (EE). However, this notion is far from being static as it went through massive changes in the course of the past four decades until it has reached its current form as Education for Sustainable Development (ESD). With this thesis I aimed to analyze the process and the challenges of the transition from the perspective of the overarching global power structures. Regarding the methods, the thesis was designed in favor of a directed content analysis whereby the data collected in the course of a fieldwork in Malta was examined addressing how the theoretical challenges are represented, reflected or countered there. Finally, some of the explored counter-concepts – such as empowerment, eco-centric perspectives and place-based approaches – were opened for discussion and further research as those of possible complementary aspects to the current stage of EE or ESD.

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